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I have a binder much like your own one. Plus a recipe box jammed full of recipes I either don't make anymore or never tried, plus a few family favorites. It's a very dumb system. I might try doing what you did.


Coming out of lurkdom to ask if I can have a copy of your binder. LOL


The damn good chocolate cake recipe you shared years ago on OHM is still my go-to cake! Always a fav. It's in my "binder".... Binder with a bunch of random papers crammed in. :)


I have a big fat binder, too! Last summer I cleaned it out much like you did. I love going through it! It's not morbid at all. It's full of memories and our kids will appreciate it one day. I still rip out recipes from magazines and place hard copies of things found on pinterest and put them in the book.If I don't make the recipe ever I get rid of it. It's kind of like hand writing thank you notes...some things we just must do!


I am still mad at my mother for losing my grandmother's recipe for the most perfect butter cookies with black walnuts. I have a hanging file drawer in my kitchen desk, with files of printouts labeled stuff like Meat, Main Dishes, Salads, etc. Unfortunately there are no notes to help anyone sort out the winners from the duds.


I have my mom's recipe box and I cherish it. I made sure to grab it from the house when she died 20 years ago - I was only 23 and wasn't cooking much but I knew someday it would come in handy. Now I'll pull recipes from it, usually cookies and cakes, sometimes my brother will ask about one and I'll snap a picture and text it to him. There's something very comforting about working from one of her recipes especially when it is in her handwriting or has her notes in the margins - it's not morbid at all.


I don't cook so I don't have a recipe anything outside of foodnetwork/cooks/recipes/etc.com

What is NOT morbid is that I wish my mother in law had given me some of my husbands favorite recipes to cook for him. I think you should make binders for all your kids for when they're off on their own!


Two years ago I made a receipe book for my oldest daughter who was done with college and officially out on her own. I hand wrote family favorite receipes, with the same kind of notes as you mentioned. I also found quotes that related to food and added those in the book. I then wrote a personal note to her in it. I found a wicker basket filled it with spices, nuts, teas, several cookbooks (in the South every church sells one for a fundraiser and they have some of the best receipes) along with dishtowels and other kitchen essentials! My other kids got electronics, makeup,giftcard but all of them including my DIL wanted a receipe book!! Easy enough! Daughter#2 is getting one this year, along with my DIL!!! The great thing is they are personalized!!!


A combination of my online recipe folder which I've printed out and put in my file drawer in specific folders (with page protectors keeping the recipes usable) and mom's recipe box. (Both dad and my brother asked me how to make some of their favorites from mom's recipes and luckily either I knew how to make them or I found them in the box.) These have two subfolders for Thanksgiving and Christmas. I always make the same thing* and all the recipes are in a orange or green folder. For a while I was trying one or two new recipes each holiday, but we've gotten set into our ways with these favorites, so I haven't added anything new in a decade or so.

My daughter got a loose leaf binder with page protectors with her favorites in it when she left home. Then when she got married, I had friends send me their 3 favorite recipes to add to it for her. Also before she left home, we had cooking sessions where we'd make her favorites together so she could see what I do compared to the written recipe.

Daughter and I also go to cooking classes together every once in a while. (That started when she was in kindergarten and we went to a community education class at her elementary school to learn how to make tortillas from our Hispanic friend who grew up in New Mexico and other friends who taught us the best way to make apple pie and English muffins and Fireweed jelly.) Our last class together was a pizza making class taught by a chef she'd gone to high school with. I learned to think outside of the box about ingredients at that class.

I also belong to a monthly cooking dinner club which makes full meals based on the month's Cooking Light magazine, so I save the favorites from those in another file folder alongside my favorites. We've been doing this for over 12 years.

I'm envious of those with ethnic backgrounds where they get together and cook specialty recipes or meals at the holidays or other times like my niece who married into a Serbian Orthodox family and was taught the family recipes from decades past.

I wish we'd shared more in my family, but we traveled so much with my father's military service and my husband's we missed a lot of this type of family interaction. Maybe if my stepdaughter and daughter lived in the same state we'd do more of this too. Thinking about this makes me want to cook with them.


PS I second the notion that you add a recipe section to the blog with the favorites you've shared in the past and the ones you have in your binder you haven't shared yet...


I do recipe boxes rather than binders and yes, gave to two of my kids last Christmas that are on their way to being independent. What is also cool is that I found a Christmas booklet that my great-grandmother published from her Tea Room that she ran to survive the depression. I made copies for all the cousins. That was neat!

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  • Carmen Staicer is a whirlwind of energy and execution, who never sleeps and drinks way too much coffee. She works from home as Social Media Programs Manager for SheKnows, and is the mom to six kids, most of whom play instruments, sing or dance and all of whom are much smarter than she will ever be. In other words, her house is never ever quiet or still. A concentration of asthma, food allergies, spectrum disorders and learning disabilities means that she spends an awful lot of time second guessing herself and Dr. Googling, as well as learning to cook everything the family might like to eat. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, boxing (she has her Black Belt in Muay Thai), sleeping, exploring coffee shops, photography, ballet class and cooking. She excels in being a smart mouth and has her major in sarcasm, with a dual minor in BS studies and avoiding laundry.